Education: A New Battle over School Reform

Criticism greets a tough report on progress in U.S. classrooms

Few government documents have raised more hackles or lit more fires than the 1983 Department of Education report titled A Nation at Risk. The survey sounded an alarm over the "rising tide of mediocrity" sweeping American schools. It warned that had this mediocrity been imposed by a foreign power, "we might well have viewed it as an act of war." Overnight, the document became a spur for nationwide school reform.

Last week at the White House, on the fifth anniversary of A Nation at Risk, Secretary of Education William Bennett presented President Reagan with a sequel that is likely to be...

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